The Advance Warning System (AWS) disseminates information to people with disabilities and others with access and functional needs through their service providers. Please share the important information below with your clients and other agencies or individuals to empower them to make informed decisions.


Winter Weather Advisory is in effect from 4 a.m. Thursday through 7 p.m. Friday; 5 to 9 inches of snow is predicted. Open Streets and Roadway Dining are suspended Thursday, February 18. Sidewalk dining remains open. Alternate Side Parking Regulations are suspended through Saturday, February 20.

February 17, 2021 — The New York City Emergency Management Department today issued a hazardous travel advisory for Thursday, February 18, and Friday, February 19. The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Weather Advisory for New York City in effect from 4 a.m. Thursday through 7 p.m. Friday. According to the latest forecast, a developing low pressure system will bring moderate to locally heavy snow to the area Thursday into Friday. Light snow may develop Thursday morning, gradually increasing through the afternoon. The heaviest period of snowfall is expected mid-morning through the afternoon. Light snowfall may continue through the overnight hours, before tapering off on Friday afternoon. Lingering snow showers are possible into Friday evening. A total of 5 to 9 inches of snowfall is in the forecast, with locally higher amounts possible. Alternate Side Parking Regulations will be suspended through Saturday, February 20 to facilitate snow removal. Payment at parking meters remain in effect throughout the city. New Yorkers are advised to refrain from unnecessary travel. If travel is necessary, use mass transit where possible, wear a face covering, and adhere to social distancing guidelines. If you must drive, allow for extra travel time and exercise caution.

 “As we anticipate additional snow tomorrow, we advise New Yorkers to prepare for messy road conditions. If you must travel, we encourage you to use mass transit and allow for extra time. Don’t forget to virtually check on your neighbors and family members,” said NYC Emergency Management Commissioner Deanne Criswell. 

 “Thursday’s snow may come in fast throughout the afternoon. We are ready to fight it, as we have throughout this busy winter, but we need all New Yorkers to help by staying off the roads and giving us the space and time to do our work,” said Edward Grayson, Commissioner of the New York City Department of Sanitation.

NYC Emergency Management will activate the City’s virtual Emergency Operations Center (EOC) on Thursday morning with City, state, and private partners to coordinate the response to the storm. The City’s Sanitation department is pre-deploying salt spreaders and brine equipment to pretreat roadways ahead of the first snowflake, will activate PlowNYC to monitor plowing progress, and will dispatch more than 2,000 plows when more than two inches of snow accumulates. DSNY also will continue to assign approximately 2,000 workers per shift to 12-hour shifts, as the Department has since this storm cycle began on February 1.

 Safety Tips

• Stay off the roads as much as possible. If you must travel, use mass transit. Remember to wear a face covering and adhere to social distancing guidelines.

• If you must drive, drive slowly. Allow for extra travel time, and exercise caution when traveling. Use major streets or highways for travel whenever possible. Pedestrians should exercise caution and avoid slippery surfaces; some ice may not be visible. Wear sturdy boots that provide traction to reduce slipping. Use handrails when using stairs.

• Take care when walking on snow and ice, especially if you are an older adult. Seniors should take extra care outdoors to avoid slips and falls.

• Have heightened awareness of cars, particularly when approaching or crossing intersections.

• If you have to go outdoors, wear dry, warm clothing and cover exposed skin. Keep fingertips, earlobes, and noses covered. Wear a hat, hood, scarf, and gloves. Stay alert for signs of hypothermia, like intense shivering or dizziness, and anyone who experiences these symptoms should seek medical attention or call 911.

• Be careful when shoveling snow. Follow your doctor’s advice if you have heart disease or high blood pressure. Cold weather puts an extra strain on the heart. 

• Check on family, friends and neighbors who may need help in cold weather — especially older adults or people with disabilities — to make sure they are safe inside and have heat.

• Immediately tell your building superintendent, property manager or owner if you do not have heat. Call 311 if the problem is not fixed quickly and go to a warm place, such as a friend’s or family member’s home (while maintaining proper physical distance and wearing a face mask). If you stay at home, wear layers of clothing.

• Improper use of portable heating equipment can lead to fire or dangerous levels of carbon monoxide. Take precautions to ensure you are heating your home safely. Do not heat your home with a gas stove or oven, charcoal grill, or kerosene, propane, or oil-burning heaters.

Guidance for Open Streets and Open Restaurants Roadway Dining 

Open Streets and Open Restaurants roadway dining are suspended Thursday. Sidewalk dining remains open. Additionally, restaurants should remove or secure furniture, and remove electric heaters. Remove the tops of structures if possible or regularly clear snow off of structures to prevent damage. The City will notify restaurants when they may reopen roadway seating for outdoor dining. Restaurant owners may find additional information to prepare their spaces for snow at

Trash/Recycling Collection

The Sanitation Workers who collect trash and recycling are the same Sanitation Workers who plow and salt the streets; therefore, trash and recycling collection will be suspended during snow operations. While residents may put material out at the curb following their normal schedule, snow operations take priority. Expect delays.

New Yorkers are encouraged to sign up for Notify NYC, the City’s free emergency communications program, for the latest information and updates on this storm and emergency events in NYC. To sign up for Notify NYC, download the free mobile application, visit, call 311, or follow @NotifyNYC on Twitter. For additional safety tips, visit

The Advance Warning System (AWS) alerts organizations who work with people with disabilities and access and functional needs to various types of hazards and emergencies in New York City that may affect people's independence and daily lives. Participating organizations receive public preparedness and emergency information that they can relay to their clients and other similar agencies. If you work for an organization that serves people with disabilities or access and functional needs you can subscribe for AWS Alerts at the following link:

Please do no reply to this e-mail. This mailbox is not monitored. To make changes or receive assistance with your account, please login to the AWS website or contact us through the AWS website. If you think you or someone else may have an emergency, call 911 immediately.

February 17, 2021